Aquaman (1991) #6
Title: The End of a Road
Cover Title: Die, Manta, Die!
Cover Date: May 1992
Writer: Shaun McLaughlin
Pencils: Ken Hooper
Inks: Bob Dvorak
Colors: Tom McCraw
Lettering: Dan Nakrosis
Editor: Kevin Dooley
Cover: Kevin Maguire and Bob Dvorak
Cover Price: $1.25
Arthur's rage is complete, Manta is responsible for the death of his son, for Mera leaving him, and now for destroying a monument to his child. He intends to kill Manta this time.
Manta and an army of Tritonians led by Merd attack Poseidonis. Aquaman arrives, just in time, but is quickly disabled by a device Manta stole from S.T.A.R. labs. Manta then sprays Poseidonis with a substance developed by Dr. Crane (The Scarecrow) that makes fears come out as agression. Minister F'ancha is somehow immune, but is attacked for being an outsider. He gets away, to the Aquacave, and rallies the Poseidonians with a symbol for Aquaman. Aquaman, meanwhile, manages to remove the device and attacks Manta when Iqula arrives to stop the Tritonians.
In a flashback, we learn Manta's history: a boy, looking out to sea, shanghaied, and forced to work as a slave. He escaped by killing his captors, and blames Aquaman for not saving him.
In a similar flashback, we learn how Manta killed Aquaman's family and destroyed his life. The two clash face-to-face.
Manta shoots Aquaman in the shoulder, then stabs him in the heart. Manta then escapes, trying to reach the surface, but his suit is cut beofre he can get away from Aquaman's influence.
Aquaman is mortally injured. He's already exhausted, and his wounds take him under while Porm tries to help him.
A strange and unwelcome face greets him as he fades into oblivion.
Yet another good cover. Aquaman choking Manta.
Manta couldn't have picked a better way to get Aquaman mad.
Why is F'ancha immune to Dr. Crane's fear gas? How did he know who Dr. Crane was?
A whale that dies while helping Aquaman is the same whale he helped who had beached herself. The rage from this new death got Aquaman inside Manta's ship.
Manta apparently dies... but we all know better.
There's a note in the letter column from longtime Aquaman fan Leah Adezio. Cool!
Solid issue. Good book.